Gangaur is one of the important festivals in Rajasthan, which is celebrated a fortnight after Holi. It is perhaps the only festival in Rajasthan that is celebrated for 18 days. Celebrated in honor of Goddess Paravati, Gangaur festival is celebrated by the womenfolk of Rajasthan. On the occasion of the festival, offerings are made to the Goddess Parvati. The festival is considered an auspicious occasion for young people to choose their life partners.
Though celebrated across Rajasthan, the festival is a treat to watch in Jaipur and Udaipur. The festival is celebrated with pomp and show in Bikaner, Jodhpur and Jaisalmer. During the festival, images of Gauri, the other name of Goddess Paravati and Shiva called Gan are taken out in colorful processions.
Jaipur is an ideal place to tour during Gangaur festival as the Lake City presents a wonderful look on the occasion of the festival. The procession to Pichola Lake is the highlight of the Gangaur festival in Udaipur. The ceremony attracts a number of tourists and locals. The whole event comes to an end with the display of wonderful fireworks on the bank of Pichola Lake.
At an auspicious hour in the afternoon, a procession is taken out to a garden, tank or a well with the images of Isar and Gauri, placed on the heads of married women. Songs are sung about the departure of Gauri to her husband's house. The procession comes back after offering water to the image of Gauri, which faces backwards on the first two days. On the final day, she faces in the same direction as Isar and the procession concludes with the consignment of all the images in the waters of a tank or a well. The women bid farewell to Gauri and turn their steps homewards with tears in their eyes and the Festival comes to an end.